(StraightNews.org) — A Pennsylvania Judge has ordered that the box covering a statue of Christopher Columbus in Philadelphia be removed. The statue in Marconi Plaza has been covered since June 2020, when Black Lives Matter protestors across the nation covered or toppled several historic monuments citing links to the slave trade.
Judge Mary Hannah Leavitt ruled against Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney who has called for the statue to be taken down. Kenney said he was disappointed at the outcome.
In her ruling, Judge Leavitt said that if Philadelphia officials disagreed with the message of the statue, they could display a plaque explaining why. The ruling reverses a previous court order in 2021 allowing the box to stay in place.
The statue was one of dozens of similar historical artifacts to be concealed, defaced or removed in 2020 when protests erupted across the nation following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. As well as statues of Columbus, memorials of Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and George Washington were either torn down by protestors or removed by officials.
Some statues and memorials have however been reinstated, including a bust of Lincoln at Cornell University campus last year. But the movement to “review” historic memorials continues across the nation. In Chicago, Mayor Lori Lightfoot has established the Chicago Monuments Project to determine whether monuments in the city “warrant attention or action”. Two Columbus statues have already been removed.
In New York, a statue of President Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, was removed from City Hall.
Similar occurrences have taken place across Europe, with London Mayor Sadiq Khan committing to a review of the city’s monuments and street names following the defacement of a prominent statue of wartime leader Winston Churchill outside the UK Parliament in the summer of 2020.
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